Taking Spike to New Heights: Measuring Highway Signage

25 May 2016

Spike can be used for all kinds of sign and graphics projects – from monuments to channel letters and window film. But what about all of those interstate and wayfinding signs along the highway? You can’t stop in the middle of a highway and take out your ladder. We asked ikeGPS Chief Technology Office Leon Toorenburg to measure an overhead interstate sign with Spike, and his results show that you can achieve accuracies of plus or minus 3 percent.

In order to measure an interstate sign, you need to find a safe location on the side of the highway. This, however, puts you at a vertical angle as well as a horizontal angle. Fortunately, that’s not a problem with Spike because you can correct for angles using the alignment rectangle, which sets the correct surface perspective for measurements.

When testing a large overhead highway sign measuring 16 feet by 11 feet from distances between 90-200 feet away, Toorenburg found that the results were within about 6 inches. For example, when Toorenburg measured the highway sign standing 160 feet away, the measurements captured with Spike were within 4 inches.

In addition to capturing the length, width and area of an interstate sign, you can capture the latitude, longitude and altitude of the sign from your smartphone or tablet. You can then export a KMZ file from the Spike app and import it into Google Earth to map out the locations of each interstate sign. This is especially handy for large projects where you need to fabricate the signs, load the truck and install the interstate signs in sequence.

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